Literature is both an extension of reading as well as a unique area of study on its own. Literature allows us to take our students deeper into complex texts, intricate themes, and rich critical thinking. Literature can also provide us with both mirrors into our own lives and windows into the lives and perspectives of others. From those experiences, we can facilitate profound conversations and personal growth opportunities for our students.
Whether you are teaching literature in print form or digitally, there is a wealth of online resources available to help you plan and teach this content. The list below is just a sampling of what’s available, so be sure to search the internet for more.
- AdLit.org: This nonprofit website is dedicated to promoting literacy for students in grades 4–12. It offers strategies, resources, and lesson ideas for teachers as well as literacy-related research, multimedia, and more.
- Interactive Sites: This site is a directory of interactive websites. Click a topic for a list of online manipulatives and interactive websites in a variety of subject areas, including: math, English language arts, science, social studies, music, art, and Spanish. Some activities are Flash-based and may no longer work; however, these links are continually being updated.
- National Council of Teachers of English: The NCTE is a national organization supporting ELA teachers. While a membership will provide access to additional resources, you can find links to lesson plans, journal articles, quick-reference guides, and more for free on their website.
- PBS LearningMedia: This section of the website from the Public Broadcasting Service offers resources for teaching literature, including videos, interactive lessons, galleries, audio, related documents, links to other websites, and more.
- ReadWriteThink: This searchable website is packed with classroom resources, professional development, and more. Popular materials include lesson plans, student interactives, and mobile apps. It’s worth noting that some interactives may require Flash, which is no longer supported.
- Shmoop: This robust website offers both free and premium content. The free section includes study guides for literature, poetry, and literary criticism. It also includes English and literature videos as well as a variety of grammar materials. Shmoop’s YouTube channel is aligned to Shmoop’s Short Stories, American Lit, and European Lit concepts and titles. Shmoop features an entire section of free Shakespeare resources.
- Verse by Verse: This site from Google features artificial-intelligence-powered poetry writing. Use the experimental AI-powered muse to help you “compose poetry inspired by classic American poets.” Follow prompts to get started.